Thursday, June 9, 2011

Successful Plans

James 4:13-17

For a procrastinator, I’m pretty confident in my ability to get things done. That makes the warning in this passage pretty pointed. Confidence in my plans and their completion is arrogance – evil.

The warning against making plans is really against boasting about them. It’s not necessarily telling others how great a planner I am, but it’s an attitude of confidence in my own abilities.
When I make a plan and say I will do it and that it will work out a certain way – usually to my benefit - I’m boasting about my ability to plan and to carry it out.

I volunteer to plan a ladies fellowship at church, confident that it will be successful and all the ladies will have a wonderful time. But I’ve planned a few that had less than a handful of women attend.

I write a detailed lesson plan for my class, confident that my students will learn poise and confidence when they give their speeches. But the lesson takes a lot less time than I expected and I find myself facing restless, bored students with a half hour to fill.

Wayne and I have had failures of even bigger plans. Our life is like the fog; it’s short and ephemeral. I don’t know when it will end, what twists it will take, or what will happen tomorrow or even later today. I don’t know when I’ll get that phone call that will turn it upside down.

So I should submit all my plans to God for His approval. I should always remember that He is in control, not me. All my plans should be contingent on His will.

I shouldn’t boast about my plans, but submit them to God’s will, because if I don’t, I’m sinning
I don’t think this means I shouldn’t make plans. It’s usually better to be prepared. But I should try not to be so confident in myself that I boast (even to myself). Instead, I need to submit my plans to God in humility. Then my confidence will be in Him and He will make them succeed.

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